Horizontal flip-up cabinets, hard to use?

jujusmamaApril 8, 2009

Has anyone ever discussed the advantages/disadvantages of (what I call) the horizontal, flip-up cabinets you see a lot in contemporary/euro kitchens?

I LOVE the look, but wonder how efficient they are for storage? The kitchens I see them in look very streamlined and spartan. Do they work in 'busy family of 5' type kitchens?

Also, I am short and wonder if there were two of these cabinets stacked, would I be able to close the top one once it was open?

Would love input from some who have these and really use them. Thanks!

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I call my cabinets garage style and I love them. I don't have a lot of them. Dishes, cups, wine glasses at the lower level,(I am short as well)some of the things at the higher level I don't use as often and do need a stool. My double garage doors are all one door and are soft closes which make my life easier. In my opinion, they are not any harder to use than regular cabinets, they just look more contemporary. I will be showing pics soon I hope.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 12:42PM
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I don't have them, but I have always heard that they're more sensible for a kitchen because when they flip up, they're out of the way. Versus typical vertical cabinet doors which, when opened, are in your way, or can bang into other things like another cabinet door or wall, you can bang your head on them, etc. Also, they allow full 100% access to the shelves, versus typical cabinet doors where there is some room taken up by the hinges and the door itself. In my next kitchen, I am going to get the flip-up kind.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 12:59PM
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I have some great pics that my cabinet maker sent me of options for this (one I am using, too). They show them contemporary and sleek AND traditional. I don't know how to post photos yet, but I can email them to you if you send me your email...

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 2:32PM
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Thanks faleash, I'll look forward to the pictures.

Does anyone else have pictures that show 'real stuff' in the flip-up cabinets?

The ones I see in portfolios are either some kind of glass front and the stuff inside is 'artfully displayed' dishware, or their wood and you can't see how stuff is stored!

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 2:45PM
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nalcar put a row of the flip up doors in his gorgeous DIY kitchen. I don't know if he still hangs around this forum, but you could try posting a thread asking him to show what's in them.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 2:52PM
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laxupermom, I'm so glad you told me about nalcar. I had seen his kitchen before, then couldn't remember whose it was when I wanted to look at it again. I have a feeling he would be keeping stuff you don't need very often in those because they're quite high. But I'll ask... thanks!

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 4:22PM
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Flip door are more expensive but are more ergonimic for 1 person to multi people in the kitchen.
You open the flap door up on the beginning of cokking and you close on the end, you easly have the all kitchen product at your eyes whitout open and close cabinets.

here an example (I even put the microwave behind a flap door):
From 212 Sangamon kitchen

click for more.

if you put extra cabinet above I will suggest regular door, because will be very hard to rich for close them.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 6:47PM
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Mine are Ikea, 39" wide by 15" high. I love them for the ergonomic reasons stated. Actually, I was just staying at a vacation home and found myself rather annoyed by the upper cab doors opening into my face.

The Ikea ones only came with a white interior. That said, higher-end ones I have seen have white interiors, also. I edgebanded all my cabs to match my dark doors so that I would not see a white line between the doors.

I store everyday glasses, mugs, ramekins, and pitchers in mine. I put the glass shelf in one of the cabs but left it out in the other so that I could store taller items.

I have no trouble opening and closing the upper row of cabs-- I'm 5'6".


Open (different day, different light):

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 7:49PM
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I love mine! I have 15" deep cabinets above them which allows storage of other stuff, other than dishes, ie 13x9 cake pans and other stuff that won't fit in your standard 12" deep wall cabinet. They're Kraftmaid. I'm 5'7" and have to be on my tiptoes to reach the uppers, but again, I don't have stuff I use daily there. I managed to fit all my dishes in the 2 lowers. They're wonderful for unloading the dishwasher!

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 8:27PM
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THANK YOU everyone!

It really helps to see them 'in action', particularly norwega - you're getting quite alot in there.

I do still worry about being able to close them if I had two stacked like morton5 or doubles like giacomo - the doors are up pretty high once they're open (I'm only 5'2"). I'm thinking I might need to do something like norwega with regular cabinets over 1 horizontal.

(BTW morton5, you have the exact color scheme I'm planning, oak floor/dark cabinets/light granite. Yours looks very pretty.)

thanks all!

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 9:24PM
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yes, they're full! I even bought new glassware at Ikea that stacks, so we can fit it all. Wine glasses and coffee cups are in other cabinets, but the glassware cabinet is only 24 wide. I highly recommend getting the uppers 15inch deep, if you can, as that extra 3inch depth helps in storage. A finished shelf is needed to cover the bottom of the 15" deep cabinets, if they are on top of 12" deep cabinets.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2009 at 10:36AM
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One tip as you look into these doors...check carefully into the hinges. A friend had some installed from a very nice cabinet line, and she has had nothing but problems with the hinges. They are supposed to be soft-close, but the soft-close feature on several of them has failed. This means the doors slam down on occasion. It also means that she has twice had to have the glass replaced on her doors when it broke after the door slammed shut. It also means she got a nasty bump on the head once when a door slammed shut on her.

It doesn't seem that the people here who have these doors have had hinge problems, so you may want to find out about the brands they have. I'll try to find out the hinge brand my friend has so you can avoid those.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2009 at 11:50AM
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Ikea switched from hinges made by Ferrari to Blum hinges in the summer of 2008. So far I have had no trouble with the Blum hinges.

Currently, the Ikea Avsikt doors in Nalcar's gorgeous kitchen are not compatible with the Blum hinges (Nalcar must have the Ferrari hinges). I'm sure it's a non-issue for him since he uses those cabs mainly for lighting. I only mention it in case others are thinking of using Avsikt doors on a horizontal cab.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2009 at 1:45PM
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Circus Peanut

Bumping this thread for current interest. These cabinets are so common in Europe, it's funny we don't make more use of them here in the States.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2010 at 11:39AM
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Old thread, but I'll just make two comments: avoid the compressed-air hinges - they fail after a while. Also, try to get the type that allow the door to be opened only partially, rather than flipped all the way up - that way, it's easier to reach the door to close it again.

    Bookmark   last Wednesday at 2:20AM
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yes, the hinges fail after a few years, but we've been able to purchase new ones, so not a problem. This style cabinet makes it so easy to put dishes away!

    Bookmark   last Wednesday at 8:54AM
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Huh. We have the horizontal hinges in our fridge cabinet. How do you tell if they are compressed air hinges? link: http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/40279477/

These do open partially or fully, which is nice in such a high-up cabinet.

    Bookmark   last Wednesday at 11:01AM
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